Our Picks for the Best Sous Vide Accessories 2018

sous vide accessories

At a Glance: Our Choices for the Best Sous Vide Accessories (2018)

Note: Some of the links above take you to more information, current prices and customer reviews on Amazon.

Hooked on sous vide cooking? Yes it happens…often. Here at Sous Vide Hub we pride ourselves on bringing you the latest news on sous vide products and accessories. We love reporting ingenious sous vide hacks as well. So whilst this article is about the latest sous vide accessories on the market, we will also provide you with our top sous vide hack in each category too.

Sous vide cooking does not have to cost you a fortune. But from time to time you might want to splurge on yourself (or someone else) with a little extra sous vide cooking love. Here we’ll explore the best sous vide accessories around and you can decide whether these accessories are a must have for you in your kitchen.

If you are new to sous vide cooking, feel free to browse our FAQ and Resources page to come up to speed with what sous vide cooking is all about.

 

Sous Vide Accessory Categories

Sous vide accessories fall into the following broad categories:

  • Sous Vide water balls (insulate your water bath)
  • Sous Vide Food Pouch Racks (keep food pouches submerged and separate from one another)
  • Sous Vide Weights and Pegs/Clips (hold food pouches under water)
  • Sous Vide Insulators (keep your water bath at a constant temperature)
  • Sous Vide Immersion Circulator cases (protect your sous vide machine)

 

Sous Vide Water Balls

JUMP TO OUR TOP SOUS VIDE WATER BALL PICKS

Sous vide water balls are plastic balls that float on top of your sous vide water container.  Think of sous vide water balls as an insulator or blanket that lies over the top of whatever pot, container or water vessel you are using for your sous vide cook. Water balls insulate against temperature loss from your water bath.  Sous vide water balls come in varying sizes and are made of varying qualities of plastic.

To read a more detailed explanation of why sous vide water balls assist you with your sous vide cooking, click here.

Sous Vide Food Pouch Racks

JUMP TO OUR TOP FOOD POUCH RACK PICKS

Stainless steel sous vide racks are very handy. Here is why:

  • They increase the capacity of food you can put in your pot, sous vide water oven or any other water vessel you are using (such as plastic containers – read more about plastic containers by clicking here)
  • The racks help to separate each vacuum sealed bag of food so that the food cooks evenly. Even cooking is the secret to sous vide success
  • The rack makes it easy to get food in and out of your water bath
  • You don’t have to worry about clipping your food pouches to your water vessel. When vacuum sealed properly, your food bags can be placed evenly between each section
  • Racks ensure food pouches do not rest on the floor of your cooking vessel – this can create uneven cooking

4 things you should look for when choosing a sous vide rack:

  1. This may sound obvious, but you need to make sure that the rack you have chosen will fit in your pot, water oven or any other water vessel (eg large container) you are going to use for your sous vide cooking
  2. Seek out a quality stainless steel finish. This means that the sous vide rack will not rust
  3. Look for an adjustable rack. This will ensure that you can accommodate different food pouch thicknesses
  4. Find a sous vide rack that is collapsible. This will allow for easy storage between uses

For a more detailed explanation of the benefits you will see from using a sous vide rack check out our article, Top 2 Stainless Steel Sous Vide Racks

Sous Vide Weights and Pegs/Clips

JUMP TO OUR TOP SOUS VIDE WEIGHT AND PEG PICKS

One of the most important parts of sous vide cooking, is making sure that your sous vide food pouches stay under the water bath for the duration of your cook. If your food pouches float, the ingredients will not remain at a constant temperature and your ingredients won’t cook evenly either.

If you cannot keep their food pouches under water with vacuum sealed bags, you could consider buying weights and pegs.

Sous Vide Insulators

JUMP TO OUR TOP SOUS VIDE WATER BATH INSULATION PICKS

Sous vide cooking requires you to cook your ingredients in a water bath over a long period of time. In some sous vide cooking recipes, you could be cooking for 48 hours or more. For the duration of cooking, your water bath needs to remain at a constant temperature. Insulation ensures this happens.

A few products have popped up on the market to help you to better insulate your water bath. These sous vide insulators ensure that your water bath stays at a constant temperature…and reduces your electricity bill at the same time! If your sous vide machine has to work very hard to keep warming your water bath, it can become very expensive for you.

Container sleeves are the more recent sous vide accessory to hit the sous vide cooking market. An insulated container sleeve is a bit of a game changer. It sits around your container and insulates your water bath.

A container sleeve also looks a lot better than your container does by itself. Let’s face it, a few shabby towels around your water bath for insulation is not super pretty. We are not being judgy…just sayin’.

Check out our detailed review of the SO-VIDA Sous Vide Container sleeve

Sous Vide Immersion Circulator Protection

JUMP TO OUR TOP SOUS VIDE IMMERSION CIRCULATOR CASE PICKS

If you use a kitchen pot for your sous vide cooking, you won’t have any need to protect your kitchen counter top. In saying that some people do put a towel or something similar under their sous vide water ovens as a precaution. But if you are using a larger polycarbonate container, you need to put something under the container so it doesn’t scratch your counter top or cause any heat damage. Equally if you are planning to put your container on your floor, protection from scratching and heat damage is also a good idea.

On a slightly different front, many sous viders take their sous vide immersion circulators on the road with them. Yep. Don’t knock it until you try it! Passionate sous viders are using their immersion circulators in their RVs, tiny homes and even in hotel rooms. It is actually a pretty ingenious way to ensure fabulous sous vide meals when you are away from home. If travelling with your sous vide immersion circulator tickles your fancy, you should consider a case to protect it when you are on the move.

Navigating sous vide accessories requires some research. And we’ve done it for you. Here’s a round up of the best sous vide accessories we have found.

Our #1 Sous Vide Water Balls Pick

Wancle Sous Vide Water Balls

Our Sous Vide Water Balls Runner Up

Wasserstein Sous Vide Water Balls

 

Our #1 Sous Vide Food Pouch Rack Pick

IKEA Variera Rack

 

Our Sous Vide Food Pouch Rack Runner Up

LIPAVI Stainless Steel Sous Vide Rack 

Our #1 Sous Vide Weights and Pegs/Clips Pick

SM@RTY 6 sous vide cooking clips

 

Our Sous Vide Weights and Pegs/Clips Runner Up

SO VIDA sous vide cooking weights

Our #1 Sous Vide Insulator Pick

SO VIDA Sous Vide Container Sleeve

Our Sous Vide Insulator Runner Up

Perfect-Sousvide Insulation Kit

Our #1 Sous Vide Machine Case Pick

LTGEM Case for Anova Culinary Sous Vide Precision Cooker

Our Sous Vide Machine Case Runner Up

HVS Hard Case for Joule by ChefSteps

 

Cooking can be a bit stressful  – Sous vide machines make cooking easy, consistently tasty and perfectly cooked…every time.

Whether you love cooking or not, sous vide machines will change your cooking habits forever. Sous vide cooking has SO many benefits. It’s fuss free, easy, locks in food’s natural juices and creates consistent meal results every time. If you want to learn more about sous vide cooking benefits, head to our article, The Bountiful Benefits of Sous Vide Cooking.

If you have decided that sous vide cooking is going to be in your life for some time, there are some very helpful sous vide accessories around. Some might say that sous vide accessories are just “icing on the cake” (please excuse us for this cooking pun!). We agree. You will by no means need all of the sous vide accessories outlined in this article. But the overview of the latest products will give you a comprehensive understanding of what is available.

What to consider before you buy sous vide accessories

Combining sous vide accessories with your sous vide machine will make your time in the kitchen even easier. The sous vide accessories mentioned in this article are all very easy to use and fairly reasonably priced.

But as we suggested earlier in this article, these accessories are by no means essential to purchase. Perhaps one of the accessories may be helpful to you but others may not. Or perhaps the sous vide accessory hacks we provide below will do the job for you just as well.

Before we jump into looking at the products available, here are a few things we think you should consider before pressing the buy button on a sous vide accessory:

Do a quick stocktake of your current sous vide set up

Not all sous vide accessories will be helpful for all sous vide cooking set ups. For example, if you have an all-in-one sous vide water oven, it already comes with a built in rack and lid. So that means you don’t need any further racks to separate your food pouches, water balls or any additional insulation accessories.

And if you cook in a larger container over long periods of time with your sous vide immersion circulator, perhaps a lid and an insulating cover are more important sous vide accessories to you than, say sous vide water balls.

If you have a vacuum sealer for preparing your food pouches, you may not need any pegs or sous vide weight accessories because you have vacuum sealed your bags perfectly which means your food pouches don’t float.

So, have a think about your sous vide cooking set up to make sure that the accessories you want to put on your wish list are going to help you with your sous vide cooking.

Check accessories are made with “food safe” materials

We know that you are looking to create sous vide meals that are delicious and nourishing. Many people love cooking restaurant quality meals to share with their family and friends in the comfort of their own home.

It goes without saying that you want to prepare your food hygienically, paying close attention to cooking ingredients in the safest way possible. This means using methods that cook food at safe temperatures using equipment that is non-toxic or harmful to your food preparation. No one wants to cook with equipment that could contaminate food in any way.

Given your food pouches are vacuum sealed (or within zip loc bags that are themselves made with BPA free plastics), there is minimal chance that toxins from sous vide accessories will leach into your food pouches. But checking the materials that products are made with will give you additional peace of mind.

So when you are considering sous vide accessories you need make sure that products are:

  • Free of any toxins that could leach into your water bath or food pouches
  • Where relevant, able to withstand being submerged in water without rusting
  • Be BPA free – so that you can be confident that your water bath does not get contaminated with any toxins that could leach into your food

 

Choose sous vide accessories with a warranty

Reputable companies will stand behind their products. Always look for a warranty on sous vide accessories to protect you if the product does not perform as promised or where the workmanship is sub-standard.

Avoid cheap sous vide accessories

Don’t get us wrong. We love a bargain. But cheap accessories are not necessarily quality products. Of course from time to time products do appear on the market at a competitive price. And any bargain you can take advantage of is always a bonus!

Where sous vide accessory companies are vague about the materials in their product or slow to provide answers to your specific questions about the product, move on to look at more reputable brands.

Best Sous Vide Accessories – 2 of our favorite accessories in each category

 

Here are our Top 2 sous vide water balls picks

Sous Vide Water Balls – Pick 1

Wasserstein BPA free sous vide water balls

Why we like the Wasserstein sous vide water balls:

  • The balls are BPA free which makes them safe to use in your water bath
  • A handy mesh bag that comes with these water balls make for easy storage between uses
  • They are fairly small which means there is less space created in between each ball. So your “blanket” is as gap free as possible

Sous Vide Water Balls – Pick 2

Wancle BPA free water balls (pack of 250)

Why we like the Wancle Sous Vide Water Balls:

  • BPA free, food safe polyethylene
  • Minimise water evaporation and heat loss from your water bath
  • Can be used with a water bath of any shape or size
  • Comes with a drying bag for sous vide water ball storage between uses
  • 30 day satisfaction guarantee

Sous Vide Hub Sous Vide Water Balls Hack

For easy and inexpensive insulation you can use cling wrap, foil and even towels to cover the top of your pot or larger water vessel.

We know that many of you use larger polycarbonate containers for your sous vide cooking. If over 200 bouncing balls in your kitchen are not for you, you could consider a lid for your sous vide water bath. There are some designs on the market with a specific cut out for your immersion circulator. Now that’s convenient. Check out our article Sous Vide Lid Options for more details.

Here are our Top 2 sous vide food pouch racks picks

Sous Vide Food Pouch Rack – Pick 1

LIPAVI Sous Vide Racks –  the LIPAVI sous vide rack holds food in place well.

Why we like the LIPAVI food pouch rack:

  • It is made with high quality stainless steel which means it will not rust in your water bath
  • These racks come in various sizes and are compatible with LIPAVI containers (along with others including Rubbermaid containers).
  • It is easy to take the rack apart for washing and storage between uses
  • When you disassemble between uses, you can store it with a nifty little velcro belt

Sous Vide Food Pouch Rack – Pick 2

Ikea Variera Post Lid Organizer

Technically, this is not a sous vide stainless steel rack, BUT it has been used by a serious number of sous vide home cooks and chefs who rave about it. You just need to use your imagination a little more.

This stainless steel rack comes in a set of two so you can have double the sous vide fun.

Why we like the IKEA Variera Rack:

  • It is made with stainless steel which means it won’t rust in your water bath
  • You can customize the length of the rack based on the number of food pouches you are going to put in between the prongs
  • The prongs (each of them is 4 inches high) have rounded tops so piercing vacuum sealed bags shouldn’t be a problem
  • If you ever give up sous vide cooking, you can use this rack for it’s intended purpose as a lid organizer!

 

Here are our Top 2 Sous Vide Weights and Pegs/Clips picks

Sous Vide Weights and Pegs/Clips – Pick 1

SO VIDA Sous Vide Weights

Each weight is 4″ tall, 0.8 inches in diameter and weighs 5 1/8 ounces

 

Why we like the SO VIDA weights:

  • BPA free and meet FDA requirements
  • The weights are dishwasher proof
  • Comes in a pack of 3 which means you can use a couple if you have a particularly heavy food pouch to weight down
  • Cheaper than some sous vide racks
  • Food grade silicone shell means that you can place the weights directly in your food pouch (although some people still prefer to use it outside the food pouch)

Sous Vide Weights and Pegs/Clips – Pick 2

SM@RTY Sous Vide Clips

Why we like the SM@ARTY Clips:

  • They are very effective in holding your sous vide food bags in place
  • Can be clipped on a range of water containers including household pots and polycarbonate containers
  • Spring loaded clips which are quite a bit larger than some clips on the market
  • 30 days return guarantee

Note: these clips are not dishwasher safe. This is not a major issue as they are unlikely to touch any food during your sous vide cooking

Sous Vide Hub Weights and Pegs Hack

You don’t necessarily need sous vide specific accessories to weigh down your food pouches. Here are a few DIY options:

A butter knife (or two) inside your food bag will keep it from bobbing up above the surface of the water. Food grade stainless steel utensils will not contaminate your meal. Another idea is to clip a bag of change or pie weights to the outside of the food pouch

Use bulldog clips or binder clips: This isn’t a pretty solution but it is effective. We see clips of all shapes and sizes attached to the side of water vessels in sous vide cooking. You simply attach the food bags or pouches to the side of your pot or any other water container you are using for your sous vide cook.

Enlist your steamer basket: An inverted steamer basket keeps your food in place. It is heavy enough to hold your food pouch or pouches down. The perforations in it allow for good water circulation in your water bath.

Here are our Top 2 Sous Vide Insulator picks

Sous Vide Insulation – Pick 1

SO-VIDA Sous Vide Container Sleeve (suitable for a range of polycarbonate containers)

 

Why we like the SO-VIDA Container Sleeve:

  • Is made with a premium, high grade neoprene which ensures the greatest water bath insulation (and great electricity savings too!)
  • The neoprene all over cover ensures base insulation
  • Protects your work surface whether you are using your water bath on your counter top or on your floor
  • Contributes to sound suppression
  • More attractive solution than DIY insulation options such as wrapping your water bath with towels
  • Comes in a range of sizes if you are looking for an insulation solution for more than one water bath

Sous Vide Insulation – Pick 2

Perfect-Sous Vide Insulation Kit

Why we like this sous vide insulation kit:

  • Great for preventing heat loss
  • Allows for faster heat rate
  • currently sold as a package with container, lid, rack and insulation (but obviously is a little on the expensive side when you consider purchasing all of this equipment at once

Sous Vide Hub Insulation Hack

As we always say, you do not need to spend a fortune to set up for perfect sous vide cooking. Your sous vide water bath insulation hack option is to use towels around your water bath. Many sous viders wrap the towels around the water bath. For additional insulation sit your water bath on a towel as well. You could also consider purchasing some generic insulation material and cut it to suit your exact water bath size.

Here are our top 2 sous vide case picks

Sous Vide Protector – Pick 1

LTGEM Case for Anova Culinary Bluetooth Sous Vide Precision Cooker

Why we like the LTGEM Case:

  • Light weight
  • Soft, custom grooves for the Anova Culinary immersion circulator (both Anova Bluetooth and WiFi versions)
  • A fairly inexpensive option to protect your investment in the Anova immersion circulator
  • Easy to take with you when travelling
  • The hard EVA (ethlylene-vinyl acetate) material is shock proof, dust proof and water proof to protect it from and impacts and splashes
  • More compact solution for storing the Anova sous vide immersion circulator than the original box it comes in
  • Makes a great gift for family and friends who have the Anova immersion circulator already

Check out our LTGEM Anova Protection Case full review here.

Sous Vide Protector – Pick 2

HVS Hard Case for Joule by ChefSteps

Why we like the HVS hard case:

  • A great option for protecting your investment in the Joule by ChefSteps
  • Fits the Joule sous vide immersion circulator perfectly
  • Shock proof, dust proof and water resistant
  • Comes with a hand strap for easy handling
  • Holds cords and clips as well
  • Great as a gift for the sous vide enthusiast in your life

Sous Vide Hub Carry Case Hack

Keep the box that your immersion circulator came with and re-place your immersion circulator in this between uses. Alternatively you could consider storing it in a box. Wrap your sous vide machine in a towel, tea towel or bubble wrap and place it in the box for safe keeping and protection between uses.

Conclusion

Whether you have a DIY sous vide set up, or a sous vide machine and all the accessories in the world, we hope you are loving the meal game changing world of sous vide cooking. With a small investment of time in reading about the sous vide accessories featured above, you should be able to choose the perfect accessories to support your sous vide cooking.

And if, through reading this article, you have realized that you would prefer to try some sous vide accessory hacks instead, that’s great too.

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Product image credits: © Amazon.com

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